Background: Depression in later life has been associated with
numerous risk factors: life events, impoverished social network,
smoking, sedentary lifestyle, obesity, cardiovascular disease, hypertension,
diabetes, high plasma homocysteine, among others.
Aims: (1) to review the likely contribution of risk factors to the
presence of depression in later life; (2) to determine the effectiveness
of two different approaches to disease prevention: ongoing treatment
with antidepressants and management of risk factors.
Methods: 12-month prospective study of 21,819 adults aged 60
years or over in contact with 383 Australian general practitioners.
The diagnosis of depression was based on assessment with the
PHQ-9 and DSM-IV criteria. The use of antidepressants was
systematically recorded at baseline, as was the social network,
smoking, physical activity, financial burden, BMI, alcohol consumption
and medical history for cardiovascular events.
Results and discussion: To be presented at the meeting.